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Secondary school admissions

In Year transfers

In Year transfers - things to think about

When a child enters primary school or transfers at 11 to secondary school, it is normally expected that he or she will continue at his or her school throughout their school career. We recognise however, that there may be specific limited circumstances where a parent or guardian considers a transfer request to be appropriate. As a parent or guardian, please think carefully before making an in-year transfer request. A change of school may not be the solution and if undertaken hastily, may worsen the situation. There is clear evidence that the attainment levels of children who move schools outside the normal admissions round are significantly lower than those who remain at the same school throughout their secondary education.

In deciding whether to apply for a transfer, please look at the details below and consider the following question: “Will a transfer be the best way to meet the educational or social needs of my child?”

Discussions with the current school

Have you fully discussed the problems your child is facing with their current school? In many cases schools can put measures in place to deal with any problems that a child has. It may be that they are unhappy due to bullying, or finding it difficult to make friends; they might not be getting on with a teacher; they may be struggling with their work, or maybe not being challenged enough. Whatever the problem, simply changing schools may not be the answer to solving it. Indeed, the problems could get worse in a new environment.

Curriculum/exams

Although there is a National Curriculum that every child is expected to follow, each school will teach a different part of the curriculum at different stages and different times of the year. If you change your child’s school, they are likely to miss important work and their exam results are likely to suffer. This is particularly relevant when considering a move for those children in Year 9, 10 or 11. Research has shown that pupils moving schools are far more likely to achieve poorer examination results than those who remain at the same school.

Alternative schools

There is likely to be a small number of schools that have places available, particularly for some year groups. The distances your child has to travel may therefore be considerably longer. If there are no places available, and you still would like a place at a particular school, your child will be placed on the waiting list for the school requested and you will have the right to appeal to an independent appeals panel. There is however, no guarantee that this would be successful. For information on a schools waiting list and appeal process, please view the schools admissions policy via www.coventry.gov.uk/schoolcontactdetails

Whatever year group your child is in, it’s important that if you are considering moving schools, you need to make sure that the school you choose is the right one for your child. The best way to find this out is to visit the school you are interested in - speak to the head teacher (with an appointment) if you can. Remember the question above, and find out how this school is different from the one they are at now. Is your child going to find it easier to achieve at this school than their current one?

How to apply

For anyone making an application, please note that all secondary schools set their own rules for admissions. You can view the admissions policies for each school, via www.coventry.gov.uk/schoolcontactdetails

Further information about each school can be found in its prospectus, which can be obtained direct from the school. Arrangements can be made to visit individual schools by contacting the headteacher.

If you are looking to transfer from a Coventry school to another Coventry school outside of the usual admission round (i.e. Year 6 to Year 7), please complete the in-year transfer form, which is available from the main reception of your child’s current school. Once you have completed Part 1 and Part 2 of the form, you will need to return it to your child’s current school for Part 3 to be completed. The Head teacher will arrange to discuss the reasons for transfer with you.

If you are currently living in the UK and would like to apply for a place at a Coventry school, please complete the In Year Secondary application form online via the following link; www.coventry.gov.uk/secondaryinyearapplication

If you are currently living overseas, and are intending to move to Coventry, or have recently moved to Coventry from overseas, and require a secondary school place, you will only be able to apply once you have arrived in the country and have a residential address. You will then need to contact the Ethnic Minority Achievement Service on 024 7678 7752, who will arrange for one of their officers to visit your home address, and assist you in applying for a school place.

Remember - until a transfer has been agreed, and a start date confirmed, it is the parent/carer’s responsibility to ensure your child continues to attend school.

Transport

If you decide to move your child, the Local Authority will NOT provide free transport even if you live outside the travel limits for the school 3 miles for secondary, 2 miles for low income families. Journeys to a new school may involve additional buses, extra costs and travelling time.

Fair Access Protocol

All Coventry schools are required to sign up to an in-year fair access protocol. The aim of this protocol is to reduce the time that vulnerable children spend out of school and to ensure that vulnerable children are admitted to Coventry schools on a fair basis, making sure that no school is asked to take a disproportionate number of pupils presenting with challenging behaviour or who have been excluded. Any children that are considered to require a school place through this protocol will be given priority over those on waiting lists and can be admitted to schools even when the school is full. Further details of the protocol are available from the Inclusion and Attendance team webpages at www.coventry.gov.uk/attendanceandinclusion

Applications for places outside the normal age group

Where a parent/carer seeks a place for their child outside their normal age group they must state which year group they are requesting and why they want this year group on the application form.

Parents/carers will then be contacted to discuss the matter further as requests will be considered on the circumstances of each case and in the child’s best interests. Each secondary school governing body will need to make an individual decision. There are no guarantees that such applications will be agreed. However, where the application is not agreed a letter settling out the decision and reasons for it will be provided along with any rights to appeal.

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